Subtractive rapid prototyping (SRP) uses layer‐based removal from a plurality of orientations in order to create geometry in a highly automated manner. However, unlike additive means, the method can be inefficient due to redundant cutting operations on previously machined regions. The purpose of this paper is to present process planning methods for SRP, specifically dealing with stock material management in multiple setup operations.
Analysis of remaining stock material was performed by considering slices of respective stereolithography (STL) models. Further, an initial approximation was made of accessibility to enable iterative visibility analysis. The combination of these approaches led to efficient and fast algorithms. After analysis, the slices could be converted back to useful STL models through polyhedral reconstruction.
This method of approximation yields results similar to exact geometry. Using remaining stock data from this approach leads to a significant reduction in tool path length and processing time in SRP.
This paper presents novel methods of geometric representation and inaccessible volume calculation for four‐axis layer‐based machining and shows a successful implementation in an SRP system.
CitationDownload as .RIS
Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited